Tiger is my identity

The day I was born, when my father held me as I screamed he said ‘this one’s a tiger’. Identified by my lung capacity and feisty nature on day 1, I have been affectionately called ‘Tiger’ or ‘Tige’ by my family ever since.

But I’ve not always felt that way and this past week or 2 has been a bit of… shall we say… an identity crisis for me. Struggling to find my place in this world and still reeling from the disappointment at blatant bullying a few weeks back, I’m back in the who-am-I-what-am-I-doing-here zone again. So what am I doing here again?

But first, it’s not just me

Clearly I’m not alone searching for my identity. Perhaps it was the US election. Perhaps it was the super moon. Or some astrological influence. But many of my friends, my family, my clients and I are in a spin, feeling lost and looking for answers to these fundamental questions. Who are we? What are we doing here?

I’ve recently taken up a part time job which has taken a great deal of my time and energy due to a deadline. Being consumed by the need to get things done, I was falling behind in my every day life. The housework and washing piled up, the dog was getting walked less and dinners were quick and easy rather than considered and planned.

Then it happened

Imagine my surprise when one morning, as I was dozing in bed, I woke with a jolt when I suddenly remembered who I am: I am Tiger! It was an echo from dad in my ear that told me that I am feisty, determined, assertive, confident and bold. Yes, that is who I am. I may not be all of those things all of the time. But fundamentally, this is who I have chosen to be.

I am someone who stands up for myself and for the little guy (human or animal). I’m determined to keep going – no matter what is thrown at me. Someone who will speak out against (most) issues that are close to my heart. That is who I am. And I don’t care if it’s the ‘social norm’ or not. But most importantly, I am someone who looks after myself.

Then what?

I toned down the work a little and got back on track with the life around me. I put my health back in top priority position, walking each day, eating well planned meals and bringing more focus back to the work that I love: kinesiology. Today I’m being the me I want to be. Tomorrow I strive to do the same. I own my identity.

So what am I here to do? I’m here to change myself to be the best me I can be. And right now, I’m here to remind you that you are a tiger (or an elephant, or an eagle). You don’t have to worry about who you think you should be, you are exquisite just the way you are. You just need reminding of all the great things you have been and will be. Because you are you. And I am Tiger.

My crisis with identity

Phillipa Huynh

Phillipa, a kinesiologist working in Park Orchards and Thornbury, Victoria, teaches you how to make your life ‘fit’ again. A big believer in positive change, Phillipa teaches you how to understand your past so you can map your future.